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“Bad food, high prices!”

Josiah Chowning's Tavern
Ranked #54 of 395 Restaurants in Williamsburg
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $0 - $22
Cuisines: American
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast, Late Night, Reservations
Description: Gather ‘round at Chowning’s Tavern for hearty, Colonial-inspired pub fare, all served up in an authentic alehouse atmosphere. Try favorites of our founding fathers, including savory Shepherd’s Pye and satisfying trenchers served in bread bowls. Make friends with fellow diners over a frothy pint, or enjoy an ale outside in the beer garden. Want to take a piece of Colonial Williamsburg home with you? Order a local craft beer and keep the traditional salted mug. If you’re in need of a quick bite to fuel your day of exploration, stop by Chowning’s Garden Grill between 11am and 4pm daily for burgers, sausages, stew, BBQ, salads, and sweet treats.
Reviewed October 17, 2005

On our first day at CW, we found ourselves in the east end of the area at lunchtime. We were closest to Chownings, a sign on the front says that the dining hall is closed at lunch, but you can go to the back patio (wonder what happens when the weather is bad?).
What you find on the back patio is a CW version of McDonald's (I am NOT kidding!) You walk up to a counter and place your order....and the food is typical for McD's also! Not a lot of variety, I chose the cheeseburger/chips/soft drink for almost $12.00! If the food had been of good quality I wouldn't write this review, but the meat was gross - I ate a few bites and that was all I could deal with. So, I ended up paying $12.00 for a bag of chips and a soda!!

My advice? Plan it so that you are closer to the western end of CW near a mealtime, and go to Merchant's Square, lots of eateries there. 2nd day we at at the Cheese Shop, while I paid $10.00 for a turkey sandwich/chips/soda, at least it was of a good quality!! Or, if you want to take a backpack, just get a Subway sandwich and bring it into CW. I'm not a cheap person, but I don't appreciate paying WAY more for something, esp. when I have to order from a counter.

Other than the negative food experience, I really enjoyed my 2 days at CW, and would go back - but CW needs to re-think it's restaurant services, from the reviews I've read of the taverns on site, the eating options are very limited in CW.

4  Thank kcjones
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,571 - 1,575 of 1,581 reviews

A TripAdvisor Member
Wexford, PA
Reviewed September 28, 2005

We ate at Josiah Chowing's Tavern for lunch just wanting a quick inexpensive lunch. It is located on Market Square as part of the colonial Williamsburg experience.

Chowning's offered suprisingly delicious food! The barbeque sandwiches are really delicious and come highly recommended. They also have hot dogs, etc and a nice surprise was their bread puddings. Normally, I am not one for bread puddings, but getting into the spirit of colonial food I tried it. It was a delicious desert that had a homemade vanilla pudding taste that was comfortly warm. Very good. The staff was very helpful. You can eat outdoors under the vine terrace or indoors in a more traditional setting that can be dark, but engages you in the colonial version of quick dining. If you are a big soda drinker you can get for around $10 a plastic mug that provides you with free refills in most colonial Williamsburg restaurants on Glouster street. I believe that includes soda, iced tea, lemonade, etc. That also comes with discount for bottled water. Ask the server for more detailed info.

Recommended for a quick, tastey bite to eat, friendly service.

4  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 25, 2005

Fun place to eat for after dinner treat. Costumed wait staff and strolling musicians playing the fiddle. Good food. We had the $24.00 sampler for two and it was very tasty. Try the Chowning's Tavern ale!

3  Thank petergn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 28, 2005

We live in Virginia Beach,and go to Colonial Williamsburg whenever we have a chance.One of our favorite places to go after dinner, is Chownings Tavern. Costumed waitstaff and various musicians bring the colonial experience alive. They do offer snacks and finger foods, such as ham biscuts, and they serve a Pale Ale that can't be found anywhere else in the U.S.I am not a beer drinker, but this ale is smooth and sweet, with no aftertaste, and I always enjoy a mug or two when we visit. This is an experience the whole family will love, and we bring out of town guests here whenever we can.Along with food and drinks, the servers will tech you varoius colonial games, or gambols, usually with dice, and we always have a great time competeing with each other. If you are in Colonial Williamsburg in the evening, definitely stop here!

11  Thank travelgal6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 4, 2017 via mobile
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Thank もらんもらん
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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